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Social media play a huge role in Millennials shopping, but so do business

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Millennial consumers (18-34 years old) are particularly hard hit by internet influencers and the people they follow on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook, according to a new report.

Their daily use of Facebook is 77% compared to 68% of the 35 to 54 year olds and 52% of the 55+ age group. However, their daily influence on the buying behavior of Instagram is much higher. Daily use is 72% for 18 to 34 year olds, 41% for 35 to 54 year olds and only 9% for over 55 year olds. YouTube is more likely to be used by older age groups compared to Instagram. Less popular sites like Twitter, Snapchat, Reddit, Pinterest and TikTok (in descending order of use) are also listed with similar usage patterns.

The report on consumer culture 2020 just published by 5WPR confirms that brick-and-mortar retail continues to play a role in the shopping channel. Dara A Busch, President of 5WPR, showed me how impressive showrooming is today to sell goods to Millennials. She pointed to Nordstrom’s local New York and Los Angeles stores as an effective communicator and praised Nordstrom’s display of fashion items. According to the report, customers talk about how much use they made of an item and that they didn’t know how they got on before purchasing that item. It confirms that even something bought on a whim can become a favorite.

57 percent of Millennials discover fashion trends on social media and are expected to spend $ 1.4 trillion in 2020. They are the dominant generation using social media and are most likely to make online purchases. This group shapes the future of our business. They are influenced by both online advertising and the people they follow on platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

It’s important to note that 82% of Millennials first buy a product to see if they like it enough. They make impulse purchases and regret their purchases significantly more often (70% of Millennials vs. 59% of Gen X vs. 45% of Baby Boomers).

The report speaks of buying, but we know millennials want to own less and may be afraid to spend aggressively. They would rather spend on travel and adventure than owning art or valuable antiques. Maybe it’s their upbringing that keeps them from spending too much. The report confirms that Millennials are politically minded, with 83% of Millennials saying they care that the companies they buy from align with their beliefs and values.

Retailers need to understand their customers. You need to know what to think, feel and believe in order to convince you to buy a product. I asked Dara Busch, who won the Silver Stevie Award for Women in Business in 2019, what the 5W mean on behalf of her company. She said it stood for who, what, when, where and why. I sat back and realized that we would ask Millennials the same questions to better understand them as customers, buyers, and movers of our economy. The survey the company is producing is a huge step in understanding millennials, the modern day consumer.

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